Saturday, 12 October 2013

US consumer sentiment falls, stocks rise

US consumer sentiment fell to a nine-month low in October, according to the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan consumer sentiment index. The preliminary October reading of the index came in at 75.2 this month, down from 77.5 in September.

However, US investors have become more optimistic. The S&P 500 rose 0.6 percent to 1,703.20 on Friday, its highest level since September, erasing losses since the government’s partial shutdown that began on 1 October.

The improved sentiment among investors came as President Barack Obama and congressional Republican leaders inched towards an agreement over the budget on Friday. From Reuters:

Obama met Senate Republicans at the White House and spoke by phone to House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner as negotiations intensified on how to get hundreds of thousands of federal workers back on the job and extend the government's borrowing authority past the October 17 limit...

“The two of them agreed that all sides need to keep talking,” White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters after the call between Boehner and Obama. “It at least looks like there is a possibility of making some progress here.”

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